The NY Post has a delightful nonsense story today about that now-ubiquitous LaGuardia Airport security robot who roams Terminal B—you know, the one who looks like the result of a passionate night in Queens between R2D2 and a Dalek.
In a story stretch that would impress even Reed Richards, the three authors of the Post article claim that the Knightscope K5 bot is “creeping out women while the crooks look on and laugh.” The report cites one female security guard who calls the bot “a pain in the ass”—and seems to be under the impression her male colleagues hijacked the bot to “get a better look” at her—and others who were reportedly “irked when the machine rolled up and ogled them.” And that doesn’t even cover the jolly criminals who sit around sipping Prosecco and toasting to the many crimes they are getting away with while the robot distracts security… by leering at human women?
The LaGuardia security robot has the characteristics of an 84-year-old man emerging from the restroom trying to remember where his gate is pic.twitter.com/ofCqqH1q7Q
— Chris Hassel (@Hassel_Chris) April 29, 2018
The 300-pound bot’s only job in this testing phase is to leisurely roam the terminal gathering information via its four cameras, microphones and sensors. It’s meant to assist with security, traffic flow and environmental monitoring. There is a wealth of issues there that could be concerning to passengers around identity and personal information safety. But why do these accusations of robot-on-human crime fall so flat? Because the bot is operated self-sufficiently. There are no men secretly controlling its movements when it is in the field. And even if there were, the blame would fall on the human workers, not the innocent bot whose only purpose in life is to act as a slightly more sophisticated Roomba.
But maybe the bot isn’t so innocent after all. Maybe it is the first step in a nefarious plan to collect data and eventually preserve DNA from unwitting humans in order to one day clone them for rich people’s amusement (or maybe I’ve been watching too much Westworld). They are clearly already doing a good job of lulling some humans into trusting them.
On the plus side, LGA now has robot security. It doesn’t seem to do much besides roll around and allegedly record audio and video (creepy…), but at least it looks cool. pic.twitter.com/634UoGB488
— Dan Ackerman (@danackerman) April 9, 2018
LGA (LaGuardia airport) is an absolute construction mess, but they do have cute security robots! I have no idea what they do, but I had to jump out of the way of this one. #NYC #BusinessTravel pic.twitter.com/EVb7IAJrtI
— Judy Jenner (@language_news) March 31, 2018
— John Elwood (@johnpelwood) April 12, 2018
dear laguardia airport security robot…. i have feelings for u…. pic.twitter.com/ELUdNdq57U
— kindakiely (@kielysugayan) March 15, 2018
Thankfully, not everyone has fallen for the robot perv’s charm:
— Crunchberry (@commieberry) May 3, 2018
I landed at LaGuardia to discover a 400 pound Knightscope “security robot” rolling around near the taxi area and emitting a creepy noise. This machine records thousands of license plates and takes continuous video of people. It’s basically a rolling surveillance machine. pic.twitter.com/WYWm8FTJSc
— MZS (@mattzollerseitz) May 1, 2018
— Maryellen Nugent-Lee (@mnugentlee) March 17, 2018
I mean, as long as it doesn’t have any automatic weapons attached to it, it can’t be that bad, right?
Interesting security bot at NY’s LaGuardia airport, with 360 degree cameras.
Let’s make sure video is all robots can shoot.
All states must support a preemptive ban on fully autonomous weapons. pic.twitter.com/lRY6hiODDc
— Project Ploughshares (@ploughshares_ca) March 31, 2018
Maybe it just wants to find friendship with humans:
Going for a stroll with my new friend, the LaGuardia Security Robot pic.twitter.com/VPqMUR2TJM
— Dan Sheehan (@danpjsheehan) March 11, 2018
Wrong. So wrong. You couldn’t be more wrong. Because there is one thing that the bot craves more than data: toddler blood.
So whatever you do, do not allow your child to come in contact with the rust bucket, or else it will either capture their DNA for later use, drink your child’s blood, or sexually harass them.